To say that I am behind with Christmas preparations is a huge understatement. I had planned to make a potato dish to share with you today. Instead, I find myself sharing the saga of my cooking day.
I took out a turkey and for the first time in my life, found the leg, thigh, and part of the back horribly bruised. I can only hope that happened after the poor bird was dead. I wasn't too concerned, but went online to check. Surprisingly, this is not a rare occurance. And the bottom line was to return the bird. So now I have a turkey that can't be eaten.
I made the potatoes and they were delicious, but definitely not ready for sharing. I need to do some serious tweaking on that recipe. No problem, baking lebkuchen was on my agenda. The fabulous German Christmas cookies are a must at my house, and I had spotted a very intriguing recipe for them. For years my mom and I have been searching for the right recipe. This one sounded so promising. The smells were heavenly: allspice, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon. Yum!
It was a disaster. Absolutely inedible. It was the strangest version of a lebkuchen ever!
So, at nine o'clock, I remembered a recipe I wanted to try. It's all over the Internet. As I recall, one of them even said there was no way it wouldn't turn out perfect. Oh yeah?
In all fairness, I was pretty wiped and three dogs were whining at me. So here's what you will do. You will limit the cheese and fruit to two inches down the middle. And you will make absolutely sure that your braided dough is well secured so yours doesn't pop open like mine did. But here's the good news, even if it does pop open - it would be really hard to beat the flavor. Absolutely delicious!
Remember Julia Child's advice when she dropped the chicken on the floor? You say to your guests, "Isn't it lucky that I roasted two?" And then you whisk the chicken into the kitchen, turn around and bring it right back out again.
So, if your lovely Danish braid should open, just cut it into individual slices and serve. They'll never know the difference, and they'll be too busy raving about it to care, especially if you serve it warm.
1 can crescent rolls
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 tablespoons flour
cherry preserves or fresh berries (if desired)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream or milk
1/8 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 375. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Open the can of crescent rolls. Do not divide them into triangles. Line up the rectangles in a row on the parchment paper with the long sides next to each other. Press them together, as well as any holes.
Dump the rest of the ingredients in a mixer and beat. Spoon it down the middle of the dough, not wider than 2 inches. Add berries or preserves. Scant amounts are best.
Cut the dough on each side on a slant and braid the dough, making sure it's well secured.
Bake 15-20 minutes.
If using the topping, mix and drizzle over top when cool.
|Lay the rectangles of dough next to each other.|
|Here's where I went wrong. Too much filling!|
|Looks like a mummy|
|Tasted better than from a bakery!|